If you’re trying to build your direct sales business, you probably understand the value of recruiting new direct sales team members to build a downline. Doing so will ensure you not only earn money for your own sales, but that you’ll earn a percentage of team sales as well. Who can beat a deal like that?
Not everyone is cut out to be a direct sales consultant, however. And wasting your time trying to recruit people who simply cannot or will not sale is fruitless. If you learn what to look for in a new recruit, you can save yourself the headache of signing up people who will ultimately only leave and kickstart your recruiting efforts by finding people who will really build your team. Here are some things to keep in mind…
Look for people who are passionate about your products. Someone who has an attitude that they can take ’em or leave ’em isn’t your best bet for a company representative. Find people (ideally customers) who love the products you sell and want to tell everyone they know about them.
Ensure your recruits have the time to devote to the business. While someone with a full schedule has the advantage of being able to connect with more people, someone whose schedule is so overloaded that your new recruit can’t get everything done may not be the best person to choose.
The ideal direct sales consultant is someone a vision and goals for the future. She can see herself driving that company provided car, taking that free trip she won for the highest sales, or even paying for her daughter’s college education with the money she makes. Whatever her dream or vision is, what’s important is that she has one. And has the desire to turn it into reality.
A good salesperson (and after all, that’s what you’re looking for!), is a good listener. It’s someone who realizes that knowing what the customer wants and then providing it is how to make sales and build a successful business. If your potential recruit can’t listen long enough to understand the program, it’s highly unlikely she’ll listen to her customers either.
Look for someone who is ethical, honest and operates with integrity. Not only will those traits make her more pleasurable to work with, but they’ll help her do a better job servicing her customers and building her own team.
Encourage questions. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you’ve covered everything in your presentation. Ask your potential recruit if she has questions or if you need to clarify something for her. It’s better to cover any questions you can before she signs up than leave her with a misconception about the company or its policies which will only cause her to drop out later.
Use your website to recruit. Post a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs) on your site along with a contact form so prospective team members can contact you. Respond promptly to any questions and weed out those who aren’t serious about building a business with your company.
Being a good team leader will help make a better recruit, so learn all you can about leadership. Become an expert at communicating with your team members–before and after they sign up. Send out email newsletters, inform them of company sales and specials, share selling tips and let them know how much you appreciate them. After all, a successful team makes you successful!
While you may not find the perfect direct sales consultant every time you recruit someone, knowing these principles of what a good consultant is and how to recognize one, will help to ensure that you pick more potentially successful recruits than not. That, in turn, will not only ensure their success but your own as well.
When you work with a direct sales team you need to come up with ways to help them recruit people to their teams. Sometimes you can use the same techniques over and over again and you’ll find that your crew will continue to grow. Sometimes that isn’t the case and you need to come up with new and creative ways to make this happen.
Here are 13 tips that’ll help you grow your team.
1. New recruits are usually very excited about starting out. When this happens you need to make sure you’re there for them all the way. Help them stay excited by working with them to grow and expand.
2. Encourage your recruits when they are down. Maybe they have experienced a few no’s all in a row and this can bring them down. When this happens you run the risk of losing them. When you encourage them and show them how to get out of the rut, they’ll feel better and when that next yes comes along they’ll thank you over and over for getting them through the rut.
3. Continually check in with your recruits. Call or email them at least once a week to make sure things are going good and answer any questions they may have.
4. Set up a team call once a month. This can be for your leaders or for any and all people in your downline. You might consider two calls a month. Do one for your direct line and then do one for everyone on your team. Encourage your team to attend and then answer questions, help with problems, and show them you care.
5. Stay in constant communication with your team. Share your Yahoo Messenger screen name with them, share your cell phone or Skype information with them, and give them your email so they can contact you at any time with questions or concerns they may have.
6. Share your business hours with your team and make sure they understand that you only work during these hours. You might have to be a little lenient at times when you have a new recruit, but encourage them to work during your hours if possible.
7. Show your team how to grow through marketing. Show them how to use social media, forums, and other online advertising to grow their business.
8. Share tips and tricks you have learned to grow their business. These can include a newsletter, flyers, and business cards. You can share online and offline tips with your team.
9. Share new information you learn. This new information may come from someone else or it may come from you. You may learn this information from a teleseminar you were a part of or you may have attended a local networking group. Sharing with your team will help everyone grow.
10. Create a team training site and offer training to your team. This may come from YouTube video’s, pre-recorded calls, or live calls.
11. If the company you work with offers weekly or monthly specials, find a way to remind your team about these. Creating a newsletter or email that reminds each of your team members about this will help them remind their team and customers as well.
12. Remind your team members to send out cards or emails to their recruits or potential recruits or customers for birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. Gather this information and create a spreadsheet or Rolodex with it, so it’ll be easy to access.
13. Encourage your recruits on a regular basis. When you continue to encourage them, they’ll continue to grow because they’ll want to make you happy and they’ll want to hear the great things you’ll say when they do.
These 13 tips will help you grow your team. Recruiting others is the only way to grow, so you must do it in a way that will help you continue to grow week after week. Use these tips and ones you can come up on your own to help your team. you’ll have great success and so will your downline.
Keeping in touch with your direct sales team can be a challenge. There’s so much going in your life and theirs that weekly meetings are next to impossible. Even weekly chats, while easier than physical meetings, are hard to manage. But you can still “meet” with your team every week using an email newsletter, or ezine.
Weekly newsletters can provide training tips, sales meeting information, contest updates, new product reviews, discontinued product details, and much more. Here are some ideas for making use of this tremendous team building strategy to encourage and strengthen your direct sales team.
• Create an email list using Aweber, Constant Contact, or even Yahoo Groups. This will allow your team members to change their own email address as needed and update their preferences without your time and assistance.
• Encourage all team members sign up for the list so they can stay up to date on team news. You might let them know there will be topics covered in the weekly newsletter that aren’t covered anywhere else so they understand the importance of subscribing.
• Use trivia contests and virtual door prize drawings to keep interest. If you have a weekly winner, you can be sure your team members will be more likely to read the newsletter to see if it’s them!
• Highlight sales achievements by including a congratulatory note to the consultant with the highest amount in sales each week. Recognition is a strong motivator for a lot of people. It could encourage other team members to work harder to win that coveted spot in the next issue.
• Encourage consultant questions each week, and publish any you receive, along with the consultant’s name. Again, the recognition factor is a good thing. And it will help new team members know it’s okay to ask questions, while offering answers that others may have wanted to ask but didn’t.
• Clarify the purpose of your newsletter. Let your team members know what you hope to achieve through each issue. Perhaps you want to increase team sales, add new recruits, move the team to a higher level of community, host more parties. Whatever the goal, share it with your team so they know what you want them to aim toward.
• Provide interesting articles on topics that will help your team. Sales training tips, booking how-tos, getting past “no,” balancing work and family, party demonstration ideas, and anything else that your team needs to hear.
• Highlight new members and introduce veterans. People like to know who else is on the team, so use members’ names often. Let your team members encourage each other by asking for and sharing their tips and ideas with the rest of the team as well.
• Getting team members involved will go a long way toward motivating them, and your weekly ezine can do that in many ways. As mentioned, ask for tips and questions, and publish the responses you receive. You can also highlight the best party of the week, the one with the most guests, or any team member who brings on a new recruit. Ask for volunteers to write articles, submit photos or anything else you can think of to get them involved and give them a sense of ownership in the newsletter–and the team!
• Don’t assume that money is the only motivation for team members. While cash rewards or added income are sometimes motivational factors, many other things also work to bring out the best in people. Being a part of something (like the team), the fulfillment of a job well done, a sense of responsibility and more are strong motivating factors. Use each and every one in some way, along with prizes or cash incentives, to motivate your team to reach higher goals.
• It’s said about geese that the reason they fly in a “V” formation is that when each bird flaps its wings it creates uplift for the next bird, thereby giving the entire flock greater flying range. In the same way, team members who work together and share common goals and a sense of community can achieve greater results because of their shared strength.
Keep this thought in mind as you work to build your team through a weekly newsletter–and through all your other team-building efforts. It will serve you all well and help you reach your goals of more sales, bookings and recruits.
Being able to recruit online has really opened the door for those in direct sales to build large sales teams. Since communicating through the world wide web is a lot different then communicating face to face, make sure that you are doing the best thing for both your business and the business of your prospects.
First of all it is important to be completely honest with your potential recruits. You are probably very excited about the opportunity your company provides but don’t try and make it sound like your company is the only company out there that is profitable. Simply provide them with the fact and allow them to ask as many questions as they need to make them comfortable joining your company. Do share how excited you are about what you are selling because enthusiasm is infectious.
Once you have decided to pursue online recruiting you will need to make yourself available to your prospects and future recruits. Technology has given us so many avenues to communicate so pick a couple you are comfortable with whether it is through email, chat rooms, instant messages or phone and provide your prospects with your contact information. Nothing would be worse than to have wonderful conversations through email with a potential sponsor and then never hear from them again once you’ve signed up. Think of using an auto-responder to feed your team training emails so they feel like you are interested in them and their business. If you cannot offer a certain level of supportiveness to online recruits, you are not likely to be successful building a team in this manner.
Another thing to remember while recruiting online is not to knock other companies. Always remain positive about your product and never speak badly of another representative. You want to present yourself in a professional manner and that is not going to happen if you’re making statements like “You won’t make any money at all with Company X” or “Company B has such lousy products and the commissions are horrible.”
Don’t be pushy but do be available. If you are planning to recruit consultants to your direct sales company, please make sure they don’t have a policy against it. Some direct sales companies will only allow you to recruit face-to-face. By keeping these things in mind you will have an easier time while you are trying to build your sales team online. And don’t forget to have a solid plan in place before you begin searching online for your future sales team and you are sure to be successful.
photo credit: jakesmome